Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Gratitude

Despite our crazy dog barking at absolutely nothing, a minor drama with my step-kids' mother that's not even worth the effort to type about, the continual absence of sunshine, the reality that my face has broken down to the point where I had to cash in a doc wife perk for some Retin-A, and two baskets of unfolded laundry at my feet, today, I am feeling a tumultuous amount of gratitude.

First, what a great link up at yesterday's Medical Monday Bloghop. I enjoyed reading everyone's posts and comments. What a great community of bloggers and readers! If you're slapping your forehead because you missed it... no worries. The link up is still open! Go ahead and link up here. We enjoyed our personal best with the number of link ups, so keep it growing. The more the merrier!

Thank you all so much for linking up!

After spending most of the school hours reading Medical Monday link ups yesterday, I drove D3 to her volunteer job where she works with the local 4-H's rehabilitation horseback riding program for physically and mentally challenged children.

If seeing these kids doesn't put your problems in perspective, I don't know what will.

D3 has been volunteering her for awhile now, and she loves it. Up to this point, most of the kids, ages eighteen and under, have had physical conditions which benefit from the therapy of riding. However, despite their physical limitations and the hardships of being physically challenged, they were all attending school and one was even in the process of applying to Ivy League universities.

Yesterday, for some unknown reason, most of the kids were mentally challenged. I watched teenagers with the mental abilities of a toddler ride with excitement, children with severe cerebral palsy seemed to  smile, and I smiled for them, happy they were able to enjoy an hour on horseback.

Then I glanced over at the parents of these particular riding students, and as I looked at their tired faces, I realized their plight was much different from those parents of the physically challenged kids.

One day, as these parents grow in age, they will no longer be able to physically care for their mentally challenged children. Who will care for them? Who will pay for their care? Who will love them?

As I realized their lifetime plight, and what must be a worry which weighs more anything I've ever experienced, a huge cloud of sorrow came over me. I could only try to imagine their hardships and emotions as they cared for their children. The profound sense of loss... lost dreams, lost hopes, lost milestone celebrations, loss of future generations. Lots of loss to mourn. Lots of heartbreak.

Then, as the sadness sifted through my thoughts, something caught my attention. There, as my daughter walked along side a pony, holding onto the safety belt of her mentally challenged rider, she shot me a smile and a little wave.

Her little wave hit me like a tidal wave. It was the most powerful and forceful hit of appreciation and gratitude I've experienced in awhile.

We have been blessed with four healthy children and, for that, I am grateful.


4 comments:

  1. Love this post, that is amazing that your daughter is part of something so special and meaningful!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am always amazed at the capacity for love that exists in the world. What a great moment you witnessed! And Medical Mondays was awesome :-)

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  3. Usually I just read through the e-mails I'm subscribed to but this I felt warranted a comment. Who will care for those individuals? People like your daughter.

    I think it's amazing that she takes the time and compassion to help these kids have a day of joy (and the parents possibly a day of rest) and that she enjoys doing it.

    ReplyDelete

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